Denver’s emergency curfew will be allowed to expire Friday as protests continue with fewer cases of vandalism and aggression, city officials said.
Although police arrested hundreds over the past week on charges of curfew violations, assault, criminal mischief, burglary, arson and more, in recent days the arrests have dwindled and a sort of truce appears to have been cemented between demonstrators and police.
Hopefully that peaceful tone remains now that the curfew is expired, said city spokesperson Theresa Marchetta. She attributed the shift to demonstrators who discouraged violence.
Mayor Michael Hancock initially imposed an emergency 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew Saturday as thousands ramped up their protest of the death of George Floyd a black man killed by a Minneapolis police officer last month.
Protests began Thursday night and almost immediately turned violent across the country, including in Denver. Police sprayed crowds with pepper balls, pepper spray and other projectiles while some demonstrators spray painted buildings, smashed windows and, in some cases, looted businesses.
On Monday, Hancock changed the curfew hours from 9 p.m. through 5 a.m. and extended it through this morning.
Throughout the week protests grew less contentious, effectively allowing officers to “just chill” with demonstrators, Marchetta said. Allowing the curfew to expire is an act of good faith on the part of the city to further de-escalate remaining friction with demonstrators, she said.
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